The Mille Lacs Band delegation to the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe’s constitutional convention are coming together monthly to discuss progress and prepare for future statewide meetings.
At a May 15 meeting at the District II ALU in East Lake, delegates discussed their desire to share educational material with Band members in hopes of gathering opinions and ideas about possible changes to the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe (MCT) Constitution.
As the conventions progress, the delegates intend to use Facebook and the millelacsband.com website to share information and request feedback.
The Constitution was written in the 1930s by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and approved by members of the six member bands of the MCT.
It was later revised, but in recent years, members of the MCT Tribal Executive Committee (TEC) agreed to hold a constitutional convention to consider amendments to the existing Constitution or a new Constitution.
In 2017, the TEC scheduled meetings to be held on the six member reservations and in the urban area to gather input from MCT members about the need for a constitutional convention.
Preliminary meetings were held in 2017 and early 2018 on all six MCT reservations and in the Twin Cities. The first was held in August 2017 at Grand Casino Mille Lacs.
Six of the seven meetings were facilitated by the Native Nations Institute (NNI) of the University of Arizona with support from the Native Governance Center (NGC).
A total of 398 individuals attended the six sessions facilitated by NNI. Reports on the meetings and a final summary were prepared by NNI and NGC and are available on the MCT website at mnchippewatribe.org/constitution_convention.html.
The Constitutional Convention officially began last fall with the choosing of 10 delegates from each reservation. Meetings are held at rotating locations on the six MCT reservations on the third Friday of each month.
Learn the basics, offer feedback
For ongoing updates, links to helpful materials, and copies of the MCT Constitution and other documents, visit https://millelacsband.com/government/statutes-policies/constitutional-convention-information.
Or simply go to millelacsband.com and look for the link to Constitutional Convention Information.